Civil Rights Festivities in Memphis Saturday

The St. Louis Cardinals take on the Cleveland Indians on the field on Saturday, but more happens before and during the game to commemorate Civil Rights.

Civil Rights Game - AutoZone Park, Memphis, TN
March 31, 2007 - 4:30 p.m. CST – ESPN
St. Louis Cardinals (15-10-4) vs. Cleveland Indians (16-13)
Starting Pitchers - Adam Wainwright vs. Jeremy Sowers

What is it? - The Major League Baseball Civil Rights Game Presented by AutoZone, which will be held annually, pays tribute to one of our country's most significant eras of social change and honors Major League Baseball's involvement in the historic struggle through which legendary African-American players broke barriers and made important contributions to American society.

Pre-Game Recognition - Winners of the MLB Beacon Awards will be recognized on field. The Awards recognize individuals for their efforts on behalf of Civil Rights throughout the world.

Buck O'Neil will posthumously receive the Major League Baseball Beacon of Life Award for his tireless efforts on behalf of the Negro Leagues and the establishment of the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum.

Spike Lee will receive the Major League Baseball Beacon of Change Award for his years of raising the consciousness of audiences around the world with his commercial films, documentaries and other media works.

Vera Clemente, wife of the late Roberto Clemente, will receive the Major League Baseball Beacon of Hope Award for her dedication to local youth through the development and operation of Ciudad Deportiva in her native Puerto Rico.

Donations – Major League Baseball will present charitable donations to the Negro Leagues Museum, NAACP, National Civil Rights Museum, NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund and the Memphis Redbirds Baseball Foundation.

Remembering via Film - A Spike Lee documentary will air during the game. The film will showcase the efforts of legendary civil rights pioneers as well as Major League Baseball's role in the Civil Rights Movement.

The First Pitch - The first pitch ball will be delivered to the mound by Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, eldest daughter of Robert F. Kennedy and former Lt. Governor of Maryland. The first pitch will be thrown by Dr. Benjamin Hooks, noted civil rights activist and former executive director of the NAACP.

The National Anthem - Grammy Award-winning singer Patti LaBelle will perform the U.S. National Anthem prior to the game.

Seventh-Inning Stretch - The National Civil Rights Museum Choir will perform America the Beautiful and the Cheetah Girls will perform Take Me Out to the Ballgame during the seventh-inning stretch.

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